Colby vs. Colby [Secure eReader]
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eBook by Debra Webb
eBook Category: Romance
eBook Description: With their reputations and Sunday dinner in jeopardy, Victoria Colby-Camp and her son Jim were not about to give in when it came to Sam Johnson. He was Jim Colby's newest Equalizer--but a mystery to everyone else. Until the past caught up to him when Officer Lisa Smith was called in to drag him back to the City of Angels to clear his name. Hired by the Colby Agency, Lisa was by the book in every way, except when it came to Sam. After all this time, she couldn't forget him--and she had tried. With Sam framed for three gangland killings, Lisa found herself unraveling a man who trusted no one. But Sam would have to let Lisa in if they were ever going to expose a brutal killer before it was too late for the next victim--and the Colbys.
eBook Publisher: Harlequin/Intrigue
Fictionwise Release Date: June 2007
7 Reader Ratings:
Chicago's South side
Tuesday, June 4, 9:48 p.m.
"And there she goes," Jim Colby murmured as he watched the young woman dart across the dark, deserted street. "Victim number three is in position."
Sam Johnson moved his head from side to side. "How can these kids be so gullible?" He just didn't get it. With the news reporting way too often on the dirty business of runaways being sold into slavery, he just didn't see how anyone could be so oblivious to the dangers. And yet it was happening right in front of his eyes, as he sat watching from a beat-up Chevy Impala.
"Time to shut these scumbags down."
Following Jim's cue, Sam exited the passenger side. The vehicle's interior light had been disabled to ensure they weren't spotted by anyone watching the street.
Using the vehicles parked along the block as cover, Sam stole halfway up the block before pausing to survey the situation once more. Jim had taken the direct route to the office building abandoned by day and used for criminal rendezvous by night. Jim would put in a call to Chicago PD for backup as soon as he verified that all known players were in position. The Equalizers could tag and move in on this group, but the final arrests had to be made by official law enforcement personnel.
Sam hustled across the street and crouched at the rear of an SUV. If these scumbags had any spotters keeping watch, they were either asleep or blind. He steeled himself for possible confrontation and ran the last twenty yards to the northeast corner of the building inside which the despicable transaction would go down.
According to Jim, the location had once been an adoption agency. Sam found that ironic since the business taking place here most recently involved another sort of adoption: the selling of young women to the highest bidders.
Three females, ranging in age from seventeen to twenty-six, were inside. Two of those three didn't realize just yet that this was going to be one of the luckiest days of their lives. The third victim was a plant. Connie Gardner, the receptionist from the Equalizers, had agreed to step into that role. At twenty-six, Connie didn't look a day over twenty-one. Having a great body and the right look ensured she fit the profile.
Top priority was neutralizing the bad guys while maintaining the safety and well-being of the three women about to be auctioned via a private chat room on the Internet. If those scumbags inside knew what was good for them they would keep their hands off Connie. She knew how to make life miserable in a New York minute.
From his position at the main entrance, Colby tapped the mike to indicate all players were now present and visually accounted for.
Sam eased around the corner of the building, surveyed the back parking area and then hustled over to the ground-floor rear entrance. He tapped his collar mike, giving Colby the signal that he was in position. Colby would call his contact at Chicago PD and four minutes from now the world as these jerks knew it would change forever. Unfortunately, another group would take their place far too quickly.
As if to warn that the night was about to take a turn for the worst, another kind of change came earlier than Sam had anticipated. One of the hoodlums barreled out the rear entrance and ran square into him.
Sam and his startled attacker tumbled to the ground and rolled as each attempted to gain control of the other. Sam resisted the urge to use his weapon. His enemy had dropped his weapon when they hit the ground. No need to use excessive force. His assailant went for Sam's throat. Weapon or no, the guy was determined to win this battle. At least until Sam applied just enough pressure to the carotid artery. The man slumped, unconscious. Sam shoved him off and clambered to his feet.
After tucking the lout's weapon into his waistband, Sam moved back into position at the rear exit and listened. If the unconscious chump had been sent to retrieve something, then his pals would get restless when he didn't return in a timely manner.
Sending a complication signal to Colby, Sam prepared to very carefully risk opening the door.
A weapon discharged inside the building, the sound shattering the silence and derailing Sam's plan. The cacophony of screaming and yelling had him rushing through the door, weapon drawn.
Two men were facedown on the floor, one was on his knees with Jim Colby's weapon boring into his sweating forehead. The two female teenagers were huddled together. Connie Gardner held a weapon she'd obviously taken from one of the men and was instructing the dudes on the floor to stay put.
Since everything appeared to be under control inside, Sam went back outside and dragged the guy who'd tackled him back inside with the others. The scumbag had started to rouse, but didn't attempt to break free.
"What happened in here?" Sam asked Connie.
She looked furious and not the least bit frightened. "They wanted to make sure we weren't wearing wires or tracking devices so they demanded we take off our clothes. Big mistake."
Sam resisted the urge to grin. Considering no one was dead he figured this team of lowlifes had gotten off easy. Connie was not one to be pushed around and she definitely knew how to use a weapon.
The wail of sirens indicated the arrival of the police. Tonight chalked up one more for the Equalizers. Chicago's finest had been trying to nail this operation for months. The man currently begging for his life in a position of humiliation in front of Jim Colby was the suspected ringleader. A few months from now, when he was in prison with guys ten times worse than him, he would be wishing Colby had put him out of his misery.
Copyright © 2007 by Debra Webb.